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tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  February 12, 2015 3:00pm-4:00pm PST

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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> ifill: a marathon of peace talks on ukraine ends with a cease-fire deal. the truce, the timeline and the fears it will all collapse. good evening. i'm gwen ifill. >> woodruff: and i'm judy woodruff. also ahead this thursday: when the frontiers of science hit home-- miles o'brien explores the latest technology powering robotic arms. thrilli my arm, iuóñc- technologyñi might one day restore nearly all the function iñrñi lost.ñixdñxd >> ifill: plus, they say you can't buy love, but leave it to paul solman to figure out the
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economics of online dating. findçó your mate. you have to set up your data profiling and go on a lot of dates that don't do÷d anywhere.ñiñiñrñr0lñrxdçó xdñrxdxdçóñr >> woodruff: those are some of the stories we're covering on tonight's pbs "newshour." >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> this is about more than work. it is about growing a community. everyday across the country, the men and women of the i.b.e.w. are committed to doing the job right, doing the job safe, and doing the job on time. because while we might wire your street, we're also your friends and neighbors. i.b.e.w. the power professionals in your neighborhood.
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>> ifill: european leaders laid claim today to a fragile peace in ukraine as a night of negotiations produced plans for yet another cease-fire. all through the night in this marble-floored convention hall in minsk, journalists and official entourages waited and waited. ( camera shutter clicks ) the leaders of france, germany, russia and ukraine went into the meeting wednesday and emerged 16 hours later declaring they had a deal. >> ( translated ): there is a glimmer of hope here, but concrete steps, of course, have to be taken, and we will still face major obstacles. on balance, i can say that what we have achieved gives significantly more hope than if we had achieved nothing. >> ifill: under the cease-fire, ukrainian soldiers and pro- russian rebels will lay down arms on sunday at midnight local time. starting monday, heavy weapons must be withdrawn from a buffer zone ranging 30 to nearly 90
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miles wide. but russia and ukraine disagreed on a key point, a provision that apparently grants extensive self-rule to eastern ukraine. ukrainian president petro poroshenko: >> ( translated ): despite firm insistence from russia, we didn't agree any status of autonomy for eastern ukraine. we'll do this through constitutional reforms of decentralization that will concern the whole country. and we didn't agree on federalization. >> ifill: down the hall, russian president vladimir putin had a decidedly different view. >> ( translated ): as for the complex issues connected with the long-term political resolution, there are many positions here. the first of them is constitutional reform that should take into account the lawful rights of the people who live in eastern ukraine. >> ifill: what happens with the transport hub of debaltseve was also unresolved. the government-held town is now surrounded by rebels. news of the minsk agreement was greeted with cautious optimism both in donetsk and kiev.
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>> ( translated ): everybody wants for people not to get killed. it is painful when neighbors get killed. i'm hoping for the best but expecting the worst. >> ( translated ): i think it is not bad if it is indeed the way they agreed, if there are no violations from the russian side again. >> ifill: a previous cease-fire in september barely took hold and in recent weeks collapsed altogether. and even today, ukraine charged more russian tanks and missile systems crossed the border overnight. u.s. officials said russia must prove it's serious about the peace agreement by ending support for the rebels. they also said the option of imposing additional sanctions on moscow remains on the table. we'll look more closely at what was agreed to in minsk and what's in dispute after the news summary. >> woodruff: as the peace plan was announced, ukraine also got good news from the international monetary fund. it agreed to finance a new bailout deal worth $17.5 billion
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to shore up the country's battered finances. >> woodruff: the united states senate has confirmed ashton carter to be the next secretary of defense. the vote today was 93-5, with strong backing from both parties. the 60-year-old carter will be president obama's fourth pentagon chief in six years. he succeeds chuck hagel, who held the job for less than two years. >> woodruff: european union leaders unanimously agreed today on far-reaching measures to fight terror. they met in brussels and called for removing internet content that is deemed to promote terrorism or extremism. e.u. nations will also share airline passenger data and impose tougher border controls. it's a response to last month's terror attacks in france. >> ifill: at that same summit, greece and its creditors agreed to start talks on possibly revising the greek bailout. the new greek prime minister alexis tsipras, wants an end to austerity measures, but he suggested compromise is possible.
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>> i'm very confident that altogether we can find a mutually viable solution in order to heal the wounds of austerity, to tackle humanitarian crises across the european union, and to bring europe back to the road of growth and social cohesion. >> ifill: german chancellor angela merkel said her government is also willing to consider compromise. up to now, germany has insisted that greece stick to the existing bailout terms. >> woodruff: back in this country, more than 5,000 people gathered in raleigh, north carolina, to mourn three young muslims. they were shot dead tuesday in nearby chapel hill, allegedly by a neighbor. police say they'd argued over a parking space. the victims' families called it a hate crime. their supporters turned out in such numbers today that the funeral was moved from a mosque to a nearby athletic field. burial followed at an islamic cemetery.
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>> ifill: the legal fight over gay marriage in alabama took a new turn today. a federal judge in mobile ruled county officials must obey her order to issue licenses to gay couples. most counties held off complying when state chief justice roy moore issued an opposing order. >> woodruff: work has halted at 29 west coast ports in an escalating labor dispute. in southern california container ships queued up outside the ports of long beach and los angeles today. terminal operators said they locked out dockworkers in answer to a union slowdown. the lockout runs through monday. >> ifill: next year's democratic national convention will be held in philadelphia. the party announced the choice today after also considering new york and columbus, ohio. the convention will be held the week of july 25, 2016, right after republicans hold their convention in cleveland. >> woodruff: on wall street, the cease-fire in ukraine,
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compromise on greece and higher oil prices all helped stocks. the dow jones industrial average gained 110 points to close near 18,000. the nasdaq rose 56 points on the day, and the s&p 500 added nearly 20 points. >> ifill: and praise poured in today for veteran cbs news and "60 minutes" correspondent bob simon, who died last night in a car crash in new york. he'd covered nearly every major foreign conflict since vietnam and was based in the middle east for years. along the way, he earned 27 emmys. in 1991, simon and his crew were captured by iraqi forces during the first gulf war and finally released after 40 days. >> as you can see, lost a little weight. we've aged a little bit. we're fine. this is a story that could have ended another way but it's had a happy ending.
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>> ifill: bob simon was 73 years old. >> woodruff: still to come on the newshour: weighing the odds a cease-fire deal will hold in ukraine; the dangers for journalists reporting abroad; technological advances to create prosthetic limbs controlled by the brain; an economic take on the search for love online; chicago street scenes captured by a recently discovered photographer; and the internet's hidden science factory. >> ifill: following the ukraine cease-fire agreement announcement, many are asking today if this deal can actually stick. we explore the chances of success with: former u.s. ambassador to russia michael mcfaul-- he's now a professor at stanford university; and fiona hill, director of the center on the u.s. and europe at the brookings institution and author of "mr. putin: operative in the kremlin." welcome to you both. so was this, fiona hill, today a
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breakthrough agreement or a work in progress? >> i think it's better described as a work in progress, gwen. we have a long way to go before we find any kind of final resolution for the conflict that's unfolding as we still speak on the ground in ukraine, but it is also -- it has to be a significant step. as we saw from the introduction to this piece if this stops the fighting for a prolonged period of time, it stops the killing of people on the ground in ukraine and that in and of itself is something of an achievement. the most difficult peels are all the things we heard about what happens to the final status of these disputed territories inside of ukraine and of ukraine itself. i think the world is a significant breakthrough for ukraine in avoiding any kind of agreement now about the final configuration of ukraine itself, avoiding the use of the term "federalism" and is really
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pushing out some of these discussions to the future. we don't want too much loaded on this cease fire at this particular juncture. >> ifill: ambassador mcfaul how much should be loaded on the cease fire and hanging on that? how much was sacrificed in the name of unity or trying to get to unity in. >> a lot of ambiguity about the future of ukraine and its territorial integrity. in particular, they did not resolve what the special status of the dan bas will be and until the elections are held, the border between the rebel held territory in russia will be open and not controlled by the ukrainian government. all that said i agree with fiona. is it a flawed deal? absolutely. likely to fail? yes, that would be my probability statement. is it better than the alternative which would be more war? my answer also to that is yes. ultimately, you know, i'm not
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going to judge president per petro poroshenko sitting here in california. i think he determined in the short term this was a good deal for ukraine. they'll try to get stronger and their exphi stronger and the i.m.s. is a very important stage and hopefully they'll live to settle a better term down the road. >> ifill: fiona hill, what does vladimir putin get out of showing up or agreeing to anything at all? >> a lot symbolically. he was able to present himself as he did earlier in the case of syria and chemical weapons as a diplomatic world leader and trying to present himself as a peacemaker and tried to present himself like that by sharing the stage. >> ifill: he agreed to withdraw weapons he hasn't conceded are there. >> right. he hasn't conceded anything. he hasn't stated russia was
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involved in the conflict. all the onus is on kiev and poroshenko and the rebels to work it out between themselves. so he has come out of it, at least at this particular stage, looking wrathing good at least from his perspective. >> ifill: michael mcfaul, what does ukraine do about the border? it was a pretty porous border. what does this agreement do to fix or address that? >> well, it holds out the promise that they will be able to control that border sometime in the future but the agreement states very specifically that there have to be new elections, local elections and constitutional changes to recognize the special status of don bass before that. so i'm not optimistic that's going to happen. i think if you look at the whole thing, the agreement, i think that is actually the weakest part of the agreement that was agreed to today in minsk.
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>> ifill: what's the alternative to an agreement like this, fiona hill what's to stop this cease fire from going in the way of the last? >> we have to recognize this is an interim step. as you said it's a cease fire, not the final resolution of this conflict, but a very important step forward. we have to keep ingauged on. this one of the other aspects is this was concluded between a handful of world leaders without the u.s. at the table so gives us the turn to to push forth with other initiatives in lock step with our european allies. this is not the last word, just another interim step and i think if we focus on it in that perspective and keep trying to help bolster the ukrainians and look at the situation on the ground with a clear head, we can make this a step forward. again, the important thing is it's a cease fire. as long as we see that implemented in the next several days. >> ifill: not so far today?
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not yet, no. >> ifill: michael mcfaul, what about the u.s. role? there has been much discussion that the u.s. should be arming the ukrainian government and helping them by sending lethal weapons to hold that line. did the prospect of that perhaps force some sort of tentative agreement snare. >> i do think the specter of new arms to ukraine helped accelerate the negotiations and focus the minds and get all the leaders together in minsk i do believe that is true. i also believe it is true that putin is the big winner here. let's be clear about that. both sides are off today because of this agreement than yesterday, but putin is a lot better off. now his proxies have consolidated their gains, given up very little, and we could be replaying this game all over again in six months-time after some military offensive. that's what's happened between the first minsk accord and the second. so it's better than the alternatives but i still think
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putin gains very concretely to his ultimate objective which is to weaken and ultimately destroy the government in kiev. that's what he really wants to do. bringing part of russia or not is secondary. his chief aim is to do that. this agreement helps him achieve that end. >> ifill: what about the podeposition oral threat of sanctions? wouldn't that be enough to hold putin's feet to the fire? >> not necessarily. we've seen sanctions had a big impact on the russian economy, though one of the stories we've heard in the news roundup that the markets have rallied because prices have gone back up somewhat and this prospect of a peace agreement has had a boost here. we have to bear in mind putin is playing somewhat with the economic aspects with this. russia has to roll over itself quite a lot of debt. tomorrow is friday 13, it's not
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just ukraine that needs a deal. putin is playing to a large extent with these economic issues. the larger message is we have to keep focused on. this we can't just thing we'll resolve things with disagreement. >> friday 13, what timing. indeed. >> ifill: fiona hill, director of center on the u.s. and europe at brookings institution and michael mcfaul, former u.s. ambassador to russia and now professor at stanford university. thank you. >> thank you. >> woodruff: an egyptian court ruled today that two al-jazeera journalists who had been jailed for more than 400 days will be released on bail. mohamed fahmy and baher mohamed- still face a retrial. their colleague, australian peter greste, was freed a few weeks ago. today's ruling is a small victory for press freedom advocates. but a new report released in washington warns that journalists are increasingly coming under threat.
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e indicators of reporters without border are uncontestable. there was a drastic decline in freedom of information in 2014. >> reporter: the world's largest press freedom group surveyed 180 countries and fully two-thirds in its estimation saw greater restrictions last year. the list placed finland first as most free, with much of europe near the top. the united states was 49th, with the report citing lack of a federal shield law and arrests of reporters in ferguson, missouri, among other factors. but worldwide, the principle cause of deterioration was widespread conflict, especially in syria, in iraq and ukraine. prime culprits were "non-state" prime culprits were "non-state" actors like the islamic state group that have menaced and killed journalists. another major cause: restrictions in the name of national security from the
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middle east, through asia, and even, the group contends, in the united states. and while bail was announced for two "al-jazeera" journalists in egypt today, "washington post" reporter jason rezaian remains behind bars in iran. the dual u.s./iranian citizen has been held since july, on secret charges. his brother, ali, spoke yesterday with chief foreign affairs correspondent, margaret warner. >> thank you for joining us. having me. >> reporter: what kind of shape is your brother in now physically and mentally after six and a half months of detention. >> i think 'tissicle condition is better than before. his infections seem to be better. he's been treated for those in the last couple of months. mentally very difficult for him. he's been there long than any other western detainee. he knows that and is being deprived of his rights as an iranian in their court system and that's taken a toll.
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>> reporter: has he been interrogated mistreated tortured? his mother saw him in september and his wife this week, right? >> that's correct. his wife saw him earlier this week but hadn't seen him a month before that. my mother was able to see him twice when he was there at christmas. he made it clear to my mom when he spoke to her he hasn't been tortured or physically mistreated. >> reporter: what are they doing to him? >> when jason is interrogated they will take him for usually seven to ten hours a day five or six days a week. he will be taken to another area usually with a blindfold on. they really have just taken his life apart and started asking questions about that and that's gone on for over two months. >> reporter: thoughts say he's going to have the trial soon. buzz he know the charges now have an attorney finally? >> he doesn't have an toarchlt we have been trying to hire one for him but we have been having problems with pressure within the judicial system where a lot of lawyers don't want to take the case.
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he has been toll his charges but i don't think he understands them. they've never been made public and we don't know what they are. >> reporter: some pro government column suggested he and his wife were spies. did he ever say or do anything about the iranian government that could give rise to that suspicion that you know of? >> no. i mean, i think jason went there in order to, you know, let people know what iran is really like, let them know it's really a complex place, that it's got a rich culture that people are not the stereotypical folks you see on tv. there is nothing in his character, none of the kinds of things that he covered or had access to would have lend themselves to being anything but a normal journalist. >> reporter: as we know, iran rates near the rock bottom in terms of press freedom but particularly known to be dangerous for western journalists who have a dual nationality, iranian being one part. was he aware of those dangers
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that it it made him more vulnerable to something like this happening? >> i think so. jason knew there was always a tight rope to walk is the way he put it but he was very careful about what he did, careful about following the rules, you know, that he knew about in his credentialing. he also probably wasn't aware how much being an american citizen could cause trouble if something like this happened. >> reporter: what did your mother tell you about her visit in december, not so much seeing him burks seeing the iranian officials? >> my mom really came away with the idea that they weren't paying much attention to her, at least at first, so she had to be very assertive. she had to really get in people's faces and make sure when she was speaking with officials, whether the judges or some of the interrogators she ended up speaking with, that they paid attention to her. many iranian mothers or women probably wouldn't have been as assertive or aggressive as she was with them burks she made
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sure her point came across to them while she was there. >> reporter: his case is assigned to a hard-lined judge known for taking cases with dissidents and journalists and inflicting particularly harsh punishment from lashings to executions. do you have a reasonable expectation that he will get anything resembling fair trial? >> i think that's hard to say. my hoping is there are other parts to have the the judiciary that will look at the situation the facts behind the case, and it will be dealt with appropriately. i think the other thing is that there is a legal process in iran that is more than a single step. so threes an appeals process. our hope is the judge will look at the information and realized there's just no case there to convict him. >> reporter: well, good luck to you and your family and thank you. >> thank you for having me.
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>> ifill: next, a report on the possibilities and limits of robotic arms and prosthetic technology. it's also a story with a real and personal connection for us through the experiences of our science correspondent, miles o'brien. one year ago, he was involved in an unlikely accident that led to the amputation of much of his left arm. since then, he's been reporting and exploring what might be available to help him and others. here's the first of two reports. lots of people wonder why i don't wear a high-tech, bionic arm. it's a fair question for an arm amputee who happens to be a reporter with more than 20 years on the science and technology beat. people expect a professional nerd like me to have an arm that approaches what luke see walker or colonel steve austin wore. >> we can rebuild him. we have the technology, we can
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make him better than he was. >> not yet, but maybe soon. as i discovered not far from my home in washington at the johns hopkins university applied physics laboratory here they're using knowledge gained building compactics complex systems like spacecraft and missile warheads to push the envelope in upper limb prosthetics. this is the modular prosthetic limb. this has been designed to have most to have the functionality of the human limb. >> chief engineer mike introduced me to the modular prosthetic limb the mpl the mostly sophisticated modular limb in the world. >> the arm has 26 joints controlled by 17 different motors. so it can do just about everything that you can do with a natural limb. one of the few things it can't do, if you're a star trek fan, you uh won't be able to do this, but other than that, we can
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pretty much do everything. >> star trek isn't my thing anyway even though many people think i stole my name from chief miles o'brien. like every other advancement in technology the imus the for innovation was war. a generation ago, soldiers were coming home from iraq and afghanistan alive but more seriously maimed. meanwhile, upper limb prosthetic technology was several wars behind. wounded soldiers were and still are routinely fitted with a body-powered prosthetic the design first developed during the civil war. the split hook is, relatively speaking, a modaround marvel patented in 1912. here's how a body-howard upper limb prosthetic works. a stop tied across my chest is
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attached to a cable like a bike brake cable. when i move forward it bends the elbow or if i spread my shoulders out, same thing. if i stop and lock the elbow the same motions will open the hook, which closes on the force of some rubber bands. it's confining and clunky, likely not much more than a hook on a stick. eth better than nothing sometimes but not always. the technology had stagnated because it's such a tall order to replace a human arm and hand with its complex ignition, and there just aren't many of us. only about 100,000 upper limb amputees in the u.s. compared to a million who have lost legs. big challenge tiny demand. so in 2006 the pentagon's research and development enterprise launched it's $48 million revolutionizing prosthetics program. the modular prosthetic limb is one of the outcomes of that effort.
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the arm has 22 degrees of freedom and is designed to be almost as intuitive and functional as the one i lost. right now, it is still in the testing phase and won't be available for widespread use for years. but the research team was kind enough to offer me a test drive if you will. >> kind of generate an array around your arm which is to say i'm going to position these kind of staggered like this all the way around your arm. >> courtney moran is a prot h hetist here, she stuck an array of electrodes to my stump and put them to the arm and bolted to my hand. the electrodes detect the faint electrical impulse also generated when i contract my muscles. >> take a moment to envision what you're going to do and i'm going to say, and go. >> every distinct movement i try to make fires a different array of muscles creating a a you mike pattern.
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it's not on my training voice recognition software, period. a word of explanation. like most amputees, i feel my missing limb as if it was still there. it's an omnipresent phantom. in my case it feels as if my arm is bound up in a sling partially asleep and often painful. paresthesia is the medical term. if i focus carefully i can move my missing hand and fingers partially and slowly. >> and go. and rest. >> after only a few minutes of training the arm to understand the language of my muscles came a magical moment for me. >> we'll do elbow extend. ready and go. and rest. so you did that. >> i connected there to be some kind of lag, you know but that's amazing. >> you are in control right now. eah. that is incredible. it was nothing short of thrilling.
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for the first time since i lost my arm, it occurred to me technology might one day restore nearly all the function i lost. >> ready and go. and rest. and open again. ready and go. and rest. and open again. ready and go. there it is. okay. now we're going to close. ready and go. let's see if we have enough here so you can open up. >> and close. ll right. you ready to throw out the first pitch. see if you can open. >> pretty cool. great job. but i was erratic and soon found the limits of my ability to move my missing hand and thus, the artificial one. >> go ahead and open the hand if possible.
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all right, now i want you to close your eyes. youi want you to fully rest. yoga rest here. and then -- there we go. that happens all the time. all of this down at the wrist and hand is controlled that you theoretically do not have intuitively that you do, so awesome. >> to control it better, i would need to undergo targeted muscle reinnovation surgery. >> i tell you what i'm doing with my phantom limb. >> johnny matheeny had the surgery in 2011. >> right now i'm opening my hand up. >> there's the transmitted commands. >> closing my hand. to his missing arm are now implanted. >> flexing the wrist back. in muscles that remain. bringing it forward. johnny's surgeon is dr. albert chi of johns hopkins. >> essentially rewiring electrical information that wasn't previously accessible to
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a way we can now not only record from but have a natural amplifier to the muscles and record it in a noninvasive way. >> putting on a prosthetic arm in the beginning is basically the same as with any prosthetic arm. >> these are battery packs here. they're rechargeable. >> if after that the sensors start, you know, picking up this, and then you start seeing, you know, how the hand moves in fluid motion and all this kind of stuff that's when the world really starts separating itself. you go into operating a prosthetic just by thinking, i'm going to move. >> stretch again. ready and go. >> it was truly amazing. it was an all-natural control just like your normal hand. >> it's a o.k., joe.
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we've had patients have national feeder control. we've interfaced with gaming programs and patients have been able to not only play the guitar and accurately through the game. >> but it's hard to play the guitar without a sense of touch. the arm has sensors in its fingertips able to offer sensory feedback making that information available and useful to an amputee is the next big challenge in the world of advanced prosthetics. more on that next time. miles o'brien, the pbs "newshour", laurel maryland. >> ifill: tune in tomorrow night for that next report, when miles explores the science of touch. online, miles shows us how he has adapted to doing daily activities with one arm. his blog is on our homepage.
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>> woodruff: the era of online dating has transformed the world of romance, courtship and love and it's led to a very different kind of marketplace. with valentine's day approaching, we wanted to look at it through the unique lens of our economics correspondent paul solman, part of our ongoing reporting "making sense," which airs every thursday on the newshour. >> reporter: facebook software engineer mike o'beirne, 23, a.k.a "cirrusly" online, had been looking for a date since moving to new york four months ago. >> it was really at my brother's urgings. he told me i needed to start going out and dating people. >> reporter: ad agency art director priyanka pulijal, 25, also new to new york. her love handle: "brb- eatingcupcake." the "b.r.b" is webspeak for "be right back." >> i think you have to meet a lot of different people to first understand what you want. and i think once you understand what you want, you have a lot of different options.
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>> reporter: so what did they want? each other? >> hi, nice to meet you. >> reporter: the other day, they agreed to let us record their very first date. >> do you guys mind leaving now? >> reporter: okay, we'll "b.r.b." but while we give our daters some alone time, let's check in with their online matchmaker, ok cupid. founded a decade ago by four harvard math majors, the site is now owned by i.a.c, the same media conglomerate that runs, which charges a monthly fee, and the mobile app tinder. >> between ok cupid, tinder, match, we'll sign up easily over 30 million people this year alone. >> reporter: ok cupid co-founder and president christian rudder has plenty of competition outside the i.a.c. tent as well. eharmony is big, but niche sites are trending: for jews, christians, farmers, sea
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captains, mimes, the gluten- free, the incarcerated, the unhappily married, and of course, accompanied by mozart... >> welcome to as a fellow cat owner, i know how finicky we are. >> reporter: but no matter how finicky, you're better off with more than less. >> imagine a mixer with three people. that would be a pretty rough hour if you lasted even that long in there. ok cupid, metaphorically speaking, is a mixer with four million people. >> reporter: in the language of economics, the study of maximizing human welfare, this is what's known as a thick market. >> where would you rather buy a pair of pants, at the mall of america or on the streets of a small town in oklahoma? >> reporter: economist paul oyer has actually written a book, "everything i ever needed to know about economics i learned from online dating." based on his own adventures looking for love.
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>> so, i... i found myself back in the dating market in the fall of 2010, and immediately, as an economist, i saw that this was a market like so many others. >> reporter: well, not any old market, like the one for pants. this is a market for what economists call "differentiated goods." >> no two potential life partners are the same. every single one of them is different. from an economics perspective, searching for a partner is just cost-benefit analysis. ( laughter ) that isn't funny! ( laughter ) this is economics! >> reporter: and that analysis includes, in the lingo of economics, "search costs." >> it takes time and effort to find your mate. you have to set up your dating profile, you have to go on a lot of dates that don't go anywhere. these frictions, the time spent looking for a mate, lead to loneliness or, as i like to say, romantic unemployment. >> reporter: oyer found himself "romantically unemployed" when he first took the online dating
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plunge-- as it happens, on ok cupid. he'd written "separated" on his profile. at least he didn't say he was an unemployed drug-happy omnivore-- all turnoffs to ok cupid's clientele. those are among the tidbits gleaned from the millions of responses in ok cupid's data base, shared by christian rudder in his book "dataclysm." not that all are exactly shockers. >> when people come to a dating site, all they look at is the pictures, for the most part. >> reporter: beneath the sidewalks of new york, erika christensen hawks an arguably more discriminating approach. >> you are very handsome! are you single by any chance? if you find yourself single, i'm a matchmaker. >> reporter: yes, a real live matchmaker whose turf happens to be the subway. >> you are very handsome! >> reporter: the days leading up valentine's day are the busiest of the year for this hello dolly of the l train; at the moment looking for lasting love on behalf of two 30-something
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female professionals. >> what we're dealing with is the biological clock and these women want the 35-45 year old man quick, they want him yesterday. >> reporter: so you mean that you're sizing up these guys as... >> potential baby daddies, that's right. >> reporter: since time is money, clients are willing to pay a couple of grand or more, sometimes much more. ok cupid, by contrast, is free. but to christensen, you get what you pay for. >> i think online dating is great, but it's basically humans as commodities. >> reporter: there's another objection to online dating, as well. >> ok cupid, by making a huge universe of people available to you at any minute, doesn't that work against a rational decision about whether to invest in the relationship you have? writer r.d. rosen, who's used online dating, is working on a book about how courtship is evolving. >> there's an enormously addictive quality to online
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dating that has never existed before in the culture. you want to keep going back because you think you're going to hit the jackpot eventually. >> reporter: rudder doesn't deny it. >> whether you're gay or straight, we're constantly showing you people. there might be someone better looking or who has a cooler profile or whatever it is just right around the corner always. >> reporter: to paul oyer, though, a surfeit of choice is just another search cost for which economists have a fairly simple solution: >> what you need to do is you need to settle, to say, "i have somebody who's good enough." people hate it when we say that. but it's the way... it's the way a rational economist would think about it. >> reporter: but wait just a minute-- after my first date with my now-wife, i knew she was "the one" for me. we've now been married for 30 years. >> the perfect one for you does not exist. but there's a very important idea in labor economics called firm-specific human capital. and that is, as you work at a company for a longer time, you have certain skills that are valuable at that company and not elsewhere.
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well, you've built up something we'll call "marriage-specific human capital." you've developed your life around your wife such that she probably is the best match for you at this point. >> reporter: meanwhile, our daters have to get back to their jobs. so, how'd it go? >> so, we both found out that we had way more in common than we expected. >> i felt we connected about a lot of different things. >> i'll probably email her >> reporter: and so, for the pbs newshour, this is economics correspondent paul solman, wishing cirrusly, brbeatingcupcake and all of you, online and off, a welfare maximizing valentine's day. >> ifill: next, the tale of a reclusive chicago woman who some people are now calling one of the great undiscovered artists
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of the 20th century. her story and the tale of how her street photography eventually came to light are the subject of the oscar award- nominated documentary, "finding vivian maier." jeffrey brown has our look, the latest installment of "newshour goes to the movies." >> brown: stunning photographs of chicago street scenes from the 1950s on. they were never exhibited, never even known of until the last few years, when they've become a sensation. >> vivian was a very private woman. >> exhibitions in l.a. and chicago. >> we've had more interest in this work than any other. >> one in particular which i love. >> brown: the photographer, too, was largely unknown. vivian maier worked much of her life as a nanny and kept her own past and her photography secret. >> she was awesome. closed person. vivian was my nanny!
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she was our nanny. we certainly had no idea she took photographs. >> we didn't know she was this creative person. >> she took so many photos. around 100,000, seven roles of undeveloped color film. >> 8-millimeter and 16-millimeter movies. >> we would walk in the worst parts of town. >> i think she liked that. >> brown: unraveling this story is the focus of the oscar- nominated documentary, "finding vivien maier." its co-directors are charlie siskel and john maloof, who first came upon and bought tens of thousands of maier's negatives at an auction in 2007 and has spent the years since researching her life and promoting the work. i spoke to the two recently, and asked john maloof if there was a moment when he first realized he was onto something big. >> no, there was no moment. a lot of people think there was like a eureka moment or something when i discovered the work was great. if you think about it, if you
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have a box of tens of thousands of negatives and you look into light, you're not going to know that the whole body of work is good. it takes time to go through it all, to understand how deep the good work goes. >> brown: charlie siskel, what drew you in? >> well, vivian meyer is a fascinating character. she's larger than life almost a character out of fiction but even better than that, she -- it's true, the story is true vivian led a double life and that's a bit of a puzzle about her and her story that we set out to solve to try to understand how a brilliant photographer was able to lead this sort of secret life while masquerading daily as a nanny for over five decades, taking
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over 150,000 photographs, never sharing them with anyone. >> brown: the filmmakers blsh blrk maier's work to one of today's leading photographers, mary ellen mark. >> beautiful, beautiful. light, environment. i mean she had it all. >> brown: charlie cisco, it raise as number of questions among them sort of whose o an artist, who decides what makes somebody an artist if they're unrecognized in their own lifetime? >> that's right. and if you look at vivian's work, i think, you know, you don't need to be an expert in the history of photography to just take one look at her work and see that this is the work of a master. john has done a wonderful job in curating her work and choosing which photographs we're seeing along with, you know, the help
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of others, other experts in the field. so he's doing the work that vivian really never had a chance to do during her own lifetime. so the portrait that emerges is a portrait of a brilliant artist. you take one look at her self portraits, for example, and you see the way vivian saw herself. she knew that her work was good. they sell portraits -- they almost like to sell portraits of a van gogh or a rembrandt. this is how vivian saw herself. she saw herself as a photographer and artist. >> but it also raises other interesting questions, questions of ethics of discovery and filmmaking, right? this was an intensely private woman. it's not clear -- in fact looks as though she didn't want her work or life to be out there and that's what you've done is put it out there. >> vivian was doing the same thing that we're doing in a sense, she's documenting people. she's documenting not so pretty lives of people that are kind of
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on the margins of society. so she's doing the same type of job we're doing by documenting other people's lives. we're dealing with a story of a person's life and all its complexity. this notion vivian would not have wanted her work to be seen and she was private and that included her art, that she was creating art for art's sake and she was somehow too pure to have her work seen by the world, i think that that's overstating it. >> brown: another challenge has arisen with a recent lawsuit filed in chicago calling the ownership of these photos and malouf's right to show or profit from them in question while claims of potensionle heir of the mire meyer estate looked into, that could keep the public from sealing the fuller archive for years. >> we're negotiate ago proposal with cook county.
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i'm optimistic we'll work something out. i think i speak for more than just myself when i say it would be a tragedy if vivian meyer's work were withdrawn from view, if the public were to lose out so that a handful of lawyers win. it is a bit tragic vivian didn't get to experience the acclaim and notoriety she is receiving now, but ultimately the story is not a tragic one and has a redemptive ending and that's because her work has been discovered and shared and millions of people around the world are seeing it learning from her work and her story what it is to be a true artist. >> brown: thank you both very much. >> thank you. s for having us.
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whether the methods may be leading to flawed or unreliable data. much of the work was done by students but these days there eats an informal workforce of people who participate in studies through an online job forum known as mechanical turk. the name was inspired which an 18th century fake chess-playing robot decorated in turkish robes it defeated almost every opponent it faced for years but turned out there was a hidden human chess master behind the machine. jenny marder fills us in. it's great to have you here to talk about it. first of all, tell us more about who these people are who are answering these surveys and what exactly do they do. >> yeah. well, this is a portion of the 500,000 workers on mechanical turk that we were looking at, and the workers do all sorts of jobs.
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the work has been called micro labor because the pay is often very, very low. you see a lot of jobs for 25 cents, 5 cents even a penny. so they're really working for pennies on mechanical turk. the reason we got interested is it's been, over the past five years increasingly used by academic researchers as a way of getting data and finding study subjects for their research. >> woodruff: so what kind of research is being done? what are these surveys about i know it's a broad away -- array of subjects, what kind of questions are they trying to answer? >> in the research spans, all sorts of disciplines. a lot of psychology, social science research political scientists are using it, you also see it in medical research. we looked at a lot of the studies that are using mechanical turk and a lot of them are asking really big questions. there's a lot of research on human behavior but also on teen
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alcohol abuse. a lot of research on decision-making, how people perceive scientists and climate scientists. so these obscure studies and they're asking pretty big questions. >> that go on to maybe make a difference in terms of how policy is made. >> sure. we have a short clip of one of the people you profile. this is a young mother. let's take a look at that. >> done a lot of academic research put out by different universities. i've done a lot of surveys but just for colleges probably about 20,000. the surveys usually pay better, at least in my experience because they pay a lump sum of money. it's, like, oh for your five minutes, you can have a dollar. mommy just turned a dollar. it becomes kind of robotic. it's, like,
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i-am-filling-out-a-survey, so i'm going to do it like yesterday. if i see the same block of questions twice the same day, i even know the pattern for my answers. >> woodruff: that is a woman named sarah marshall and she does how many a week? >> sarah marshall does maybe hundreds of studies a week. she has done 20,000 studies altogether in the past five years. >> woodruff: around you were telling me there are a lot of other people like her. that's what raises questions about the validity of these surveys and projects. >> right. there's a question of environmental control. you don't know, these people could be at home and distracted while they're doing these surveys, but they're also seeing the same questions repeated again and again. researchers -- it's common for researchers to test intuition, to test a person's gut instinct and you can see how somebody's answered a question a hundred times or three times. they're no longer getting the intuitive response but a much more trained response. >> so doing it over and over
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again, you're also not getting a real cross action that you're looking for. >> that's right. >> woodruff: jenny marder, again, this is just a glimpse of the reporting you've done. you can see the entire story find out a whole lot more by going online to our web site"newshour". jenny, thank you. >> thank you. >> ifill: again, the major developments of the day. european leaders said they hope an agreement announced early today will finally halt the fighting in ukraine. a cease-fire is supposed to take effect there on sunday. and operations largely shut down at west coast ports in a growing labor dispute. >> woodruff: and that's the newshour for tonight. on friday, what it was like to sit down with edward snowden and learn the secrets he wanted to leak for the first time. we talk to the journalists behind the oscar-nominated documentary "citizen four." i'm judy woodruff. >> ifill: and i'm gwen ifill. we'll see you online and again here tomorrow evening with mark shields and david brooks.
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for all of us here at the pbs newshour, thank you and good night. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: ♪ ♪ ♪ moving our economy for 160 years. bnsf, the engine that connects us.
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